Eugene Vaughn Billings

BRUNSWICK – Eugene Vaughn Billings, 94, of Brunswick passed away Nov. 30, 2019 at Maine Veterans’ Homes in Scarborough. Born in Madison, Maine on Feb. 23, 1925, he was the youngest of two children to Herman and Harriet Billings.
Eugene (Gene) attended Madison High School where he excelled both in the classroom and on the gridiron giving Bulldogs fans much to cheer about. His athletic prowess extended well beyond the goal posts as he lettered in basketball and baseball all four years and was a three-sport captain his senior year. The fond, and remarkably detailed, memories of running the Wing-T offense, draining Set-Shots and organizing games of Pepper were shared with anyone who asked about his childhood in Madison.  
Upon graduation, he enlisted in the Navy along with the majority of his classmates who also went on to serve in WWII. He was a signal corpsman on the USS Knapp, a Bath Iron Works built Destroyer. As part of an Air-Craft Carrier group, he island-hopped across the Pacific Theatre, a strategically important war territory. His Carrier group would end up in Tokyo Bay where Emperor Hirohito signed the armistice for Japenese surrender. He returned from the war with a heavy heart knowing that his older brother, and only sibling Gerald, had lost his life in an Army flight training exercise off the coast of the Phillipine Islands. 
His honorable discharge from the Navy was followed by five years of post-secondary education. Gene would first attend Coburn Classical Institute (CCI) in Waterville as a post-grad student before enrolling as a freshman at Colby College. He would spend three years at Colby before transferring to Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Health & Physical Education. He spent the summers of his college years playing “semi-pro” baseball in Bar Harbor and Frederickton, New Brunswick. He often reminisced of those summers being his most enjoyable baseball experiences. 
After graduating from Ithaca College, he returned to Maine where he embarked on a 30-year teaching/coaching career. He taught at Hampden Academy (1 yr.), Foxcroft Academy (3 yrs.) and Brunswick High School (23 years). At Brunswick High, he taught Physical Education and coached three sports; Assistant Varsity Football under legendary Football coach Warren ‘Barron’ Pearl, Freshman, JV and Varsity basketball, as well as JV baseball. 
During his tenure at Foxcroft Academy he would marry Frances Sarah Soucy of Madison. She was nine years his junior but knew Gene as the dashing star athlete and “high school hero” of his day. They had their first of five children in 1958 while living in Dover-Foxcroft. While in Brunswick he would have four more children, teach himself how to fix used cars, speak with authority on income inequality, become a Cleveland Browns fan, build the best backyard ice rink in the nation and never ever miss a competition or event that involved one of his children. In stark contrast to the quiet, introverted way he lived his life, he created a most peculiar fitness regimen that included, the quarter-eagle and the American head stand. He was quite willing to espouse the benefits of these exercises to family members and unsuspecting guests. 
In addition to his wife, Frances, he is survived by six children, sons Gerald (Diane) of Portland, Raymond (Jennifer) of Marblehead, Mass., daughters Alison of Dennis, Mass., Georgi (Gard) of Pownal, Lori (Dan) of Blythewood, S.C., Staci (Jim) of Cumberland;  and eight grandchildren, Dennis, Ryan, Emily, Graham, Sawyer, Christopher, Henry, and Tyler. He was preceded in death by his father Herman, mother Harriet, brother Gerald, and son-in-law, Gard Estes. 
A reception will take place on Saturday, Dec. 21, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. (noon) at the Mere Creek Golf Club, 41 Merriconeag Rd, Brunswick, ME 04011. 
In lieu of flowers,
donations may be made in Gene’s memory to:
Maine Veterans’ Homes
290 US-1
Scarborough, ME 04074
Contact person:
Gerald Billings

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